Welcome to JetSetting Fools, here you will find our best travel tips for destinations worldwide. Some of the links on this site are Affiliate Links and if you use them to make a purchase, we may earn a commission. For more information, read our Disclosure Policy.
Tapas were invented for people – like us! – who like to casually graze over sample-sized dishes rather than sit down to a large main meal. Although there is a dispute about the origin of the mini meals, the Spanish have perfected the art of tapas.
There are countless tapas bars in Barcelona serving a variety of these culinary treasures. During our many visits to Spain, we were always on a mission to find the best tapas in Barcelona – and we think we hit the mark!
Best Tapas in Barcelona, Spain
Tapas are one of the top things to eat in Barcelona – and there is no shortage of tapas for visitors to try. There are dedicated tapas bars, Basque-style tapas bars and nearly all bars and restaurants in Barcelona have tapas on their menus.
The term ‘tapas’ covers a broad range of appetizers; they usually accompany wine (or other alcoholic beverages) and are often combined to form a leisurely meal. Tapas can be cold or hot, gourmet or simple, pre-made or made-to-order, served in a single portion or on a plate for sharing. Although certain regions of Spain are known for serving specific styles of tapas, all of the popular variations can be found at Tapas Bars in Barcelona.
Our intitial introduction to Spanish tapas was during our visit to the Basque region – first in Hondarribia, then in San Sebastian, where tapas are called Pintxos (pronounced PEEN-chos). We delighted in the experience of indulging in the creatively crafted, bite-sized tapas that were proudly presented atop every bar. We were left very eager to do the same on return trips to Spain – and went on to discover some of the best pintxos in Barcelona!
Seville-Style Tapas in Barcelona
Another popular style of tapas in Spain are the small meals – which are similar to main entrees, but served in smaller two-bite portions. Although this style of tapas is more prevalent in Seville and the Andalusia region, we found many of the top places to eat in Barcelona, Spain offering them, as well.
Cheap Eats Barcelona
In general, tapas tend to be less expensive than a sit-down dinner. Simple tapas often cost just a couple of euros – and some restaurants include simple tapas (like peanuts or olives) with the purchase of a drink. Just be sure to ask if they are indeed free, as everything delivered to your table is not always gratis. Hand-crafted tapas made with unique ingredients cost more – and making a dinner out of tapas can add up to more than a main meal.
Fortunately, Spanish house wine is rarely expensive and usually delicious – so visitors can happily graze on Barcelona tapas during an evening out without breaking the budget.
More Barcelona Food Choices
Barcelona, Spain food is not limited to tapas. The city offers an amazing array of Catalan cuisine, fresh seafood and international fare. Although we were intent on seeking out the best tapas bars in Barcelona, visitors will find a wide variety of restaurants.
Michelin Star Restaurants Barcelona
The culinary scene in Barcelona is so highly regarded that more than 20 restaurants were awarded coveted Michelin stars in 2023. Although most Michelin restaurants offer a fine dining experience, Tapas 24 is a dedicated tapas bar owned by Michelin-star chef Carles Abellan (however, we have yet to try it!).
Where To Eat Tapas in Barcelona, Spain
Our picks of the best places to eat in Barcelona for tapas is based on our own personal experiences. In addition to listing the top Barcelona places to eat tapas, we offer our recommended tapas to order. We include links to more reviews for each location and a Barcelona map at the end of the end of the article.
7 Best Places For Tapas in Barcelona
Hungry for Spanish tapas, yet? We absolutely are! So without any further ado, let’s get to our choices for the top tapas in Barcelona.
Pin, Save or Bookmark of Barcelona Tapas Guide to plan your trip to Spain!
#1 Quimet I Quimet
Regularly ranked as the best tapas restaurant in Barcelona, Quimet I Quimet is a must-try! The matchbox-sized, standing-room-only Barcelona tapas bar is a family-run establishment that opened in 1914 as a wine bar and countless bottles still line the shelves today. The spot was recommended to us by both tourists and Barcelona locals.
Even though Quimet I Quimet is tucked down a lane in the El Poble-sec neighborhood, its popularity is evident. We arrived shortly before opening to ensure we got a table, but found the shutters closed and the area eerily quiet. However, we returned a mere 15mins later and there were patrons already overflowing out the door and down the sidewalk!
We were able to squeeze in at the bar, which provided a front-row seat of the action. The bartenders and chefs were working non-stop – pouring wine and whipping up hand-made tapas. Known for serving montaditos (small sandwiches), the Quimet I Quimet tapas chefs create unique flavor combinations from a short list of ingredients.
Recommendation: The signature tapas – which we can wholeheartedly recommend as being incredibly delicious – is the smoked salmon on bread, topped with yogurt, honey and truffle. Read Reviews!
#2 La Tasqueta de Blai
Many visitors searching for the best tapas in Barcelona end up on the popular tapas street, Carrer de Blai. Lined with Basque-style pintxos bars displaying an array of picturesque tapas perched atop the bar, this area is a Barcelona foodie haven. While the mouthwatering morsels at any of these popular Barcelona restaurants can easily tempt patrons through the door, we suggest finding La Tasqueta de Blai.
The casual – and always packed – eatery offers dozens of perfectly-presented choices of classic tapas in Barcelona. Even better, each selection typically costs about 2 euros, making them the best cheap tapas in Barcelona!
Drink orders are placed with waitstaff, but the tapas at La Tasqueta de Blai are self-serve. Simply grab a plate, peruse the bar-top offerings and take whatever looks appealing. Some pintxos are better heated (especially tapas with meat or egg), so ask the bartender to heat your selections if you would like. When you have had your fill, the waitstaff will count the number of toothpicks left on your plate and you will be charged accordingly.
Top Tip: We sat at the bar, which we enjoyed, however there will be a constant stream of glasses, plates and hands swirling around you at all times!
Recommendation: The assortment of La Tasqueta de Blai tapas is constantly changing; each time a tray is emptied, a new tray of different tapas replaces it. Therefore, it is difficult to recommend a single dish. Instead, we suggest keeping an eye on the bar for any specialty Barcelona tapas – which are usually hot out of the oven. These rarely make it to the counter and instead are gobbled up before the bartender can even finishing setting them out. Read Reviews!
#3 Abirradero Craft Beer and Tapas
One of the best bars in Barcelona for craft beer, Abirradero also has excellent tapas. In addition to their tapas menu – which features classic bar favorites, like potato wedges, falafel and calamari – they offer burgers and boards, as well.
To be completely honest, though, we went to Abirradero for the beer. The brewpub features an astounding 40 taps – 20 of which they use for their own craft beer that is brewed just around the corner. Beyond their own offerings, they carry a selection of regional craft beers as well.
We originally had not planned on eating at Abirradero, but after seeing plate after plate of tempting Barcelona tapas being taken to neighboring tables, we couldn’t resist ordering a few for ourselves.
Recommendation: Desiring something unique and fitting for a craft beer bar, we tried a heaping helping of the signature cheese, a Shropshire fermented in their own Encantada Gruit Beer. Full of flavor, the salty, creamy snack matched perfectly with the beers. Read Reviews!
We couldn’t resist the charm of this inviting corner spot in L’Eixample with chalkboard signs and hanging hunks of Iberico ham. The interior is cozy with a few wine barrel tables clustered together in the back. For us, it was one of those unexpectedly cool restaurants in Barcelona that we noticed was frequented by locals more than tourists. The menu features typical tapas and a nice selection of Spanish meats and cheeses – as well as sandwiches, salads and a few main dishes.
Sitting at an indoor table, we lingered over a meal of shared tapas and wine. Platters of delectable local cuisine – including meats, cheeses, roasted peppers, stuffed mushrooms and a tomato spread – were brought to our table in a steady flow.
Recommendation: Try the Iberico ham or the tomato marmalade…and maybe even one glass of vermut. Read Reviews!
Top Tip: Vermouth is an incredibly popular drink in Barcelona. While Colmado is a fine place to try it, there are two other old school cocktail bars in L’Eixample where they make hand-crafted vermut drinks: Ideal and Tandem. The stylish, dimly lit bars evoke the era of Prohibition. At Tandem, tell the bartender what kind of drink you prefer and they will masterfully create a concoction just for you.
#5 Fabrica Moritz Barcelona Bar
The Moritz beer company was established in Barcelona in 1856 – and the local brew is still made fresh in the heart of Barcelona today. The original beer factory houses the brewery, as well as a restaurant, a bar, a museum, a gift shop and a wine room. More than just for drinking beer, Moritz has a massive menu, including top-rated tapas.
Although certainly commercialized, we couldn’t pass up the chance to try the local beer (we recommend the half dark-half light combination, which was delicious!). And, since we were drinking the classic local beer, we tried some of the classic, local tapas, too.
Recommendation: Patatas Bravas is a quintessential Barcelona dish…and many people claim that Moritz makes the best in the city. The piping hot potatoes are served two ways at Moritz: Our Way (Catalan style, which includes a spicy aioli sauce) or Their Way (Madrid style, with mayo and ketchup). We loved them both!
Top Tip: When in Catalonia, get the Our Way. Read Reviews!
#6 La Boqueria Barcelona Tapas
La Mercat de Sant Josep de la Boqueria – or just La Boqueria for short – is Barcelona’s best market. The history dates to the year 1217 and it still reigns as the top place to find the best food in Barcelona. Each stall has decorative displays of local sweets, produce, meat, cheese and seafood. And, several small tapas bars are mixed in with all the vendors.
The two most popular tapas bars at La Boqueria are Bar Pinotxo (now closed) and El Quim, both of which rarely have open seats, as was the case on our visit. Being too hungry to wait for an available spot, we simply ordered quick tapas on the go (like jamon and queso croquettes) from vendors that didn’t have a wait.
Recommendation: In hindsight, we really wish we had waited to eat at El Quim. The house specialty at El Quim is Eggs with squid – and we can’t wait to try them on our next trip to Barcelona! Read Reviews!
#7 Irati Taverna Basca
Located down an alley, just steps off Las Ramblas, IRATI is a Basque-style tapas bar in the heart Barcelona. The restaurant features two sections: The tapas bar in the front and full-service seating in the back, with a complete menu of entrees.
We were only looking for a glass of wine and a snack, so we sat at the bar and quickly made new friends. The selection of pintxos was excellent – although most included fish toppings on our visit. Rather than being put off by our pickiness, the helpful staff aided in identifying the tapas that were sans-fish.
Recommendation: Whatever catches your eye! Unlike some famous restaurants in Barcelona, the bar staff at Irati is attentive, friendly and helpful – so, if you are a beginner at tapas and pintxos, just ask. Read Reviews!
Barcelona Tapas Bar Map
Use this link to Google for our interactive Map of Barcelona Tapas Restaurants.
Barcelona Food Tours
Bar-hopping for Barcelona tapas can be an intimidating experience. Let a guide lead you to the best spots and help translate the tapas menus in Barcelona. These Barcelona Food Tours come highly recommended.
Barcelona Tapas Evening Walking Tour
Join a guide for an evening Barcelona tapas tour that features a fantastic introduction to the Catalan cuisine. Stroll through iconic neighborhoods and learn how and what to order. Get the details!
Electric Bike Barcelona Tour with Tapas and Drinks
See Barcelona on two wheels! Let a local guide lead the way through the best neighborhoods and end the tour with local specialties – including Vermut, wine and tapas! Find out More!
Small-Group Barcelona Tapas and Wine Experience
This Barcelona gastronomy tour features tapas and wine from four restaurants – and offers both midday and evening excursions. Book It Now!
Find more of the Top-rated Barcelona Food Tours on Viator!
Traveling to Seville, too? Read about our favorite Tapas Bars in Seville, Spain!
Top Tips For Your Trip To Barcelona
Now that you know where to eat, we have a few more tips for your trip. Be sure not to miss a thing and read our Best Barcelona Itinerary to plan your Spain vacation!
Barcelona City Tour
Get better acquainted on a Self-Guided Barcelona Walking Tour! Use our detailed guide to navigate your way to top Barcelona sights.
Where To Stay in Barcelona
During our visit to Barcelona, we stayed in an awesome Airbnb Apartment. However, for those who prefer staying in traditional accommodations, there are many Barcelona hotels to choose from in – or close to – the city center.
Before You Go To Barcelona
- Don’t forget to pack a pair of lightweight and comfortable walking shoes. I (Sarah) have traveled with these shoes by New Balance and Reef. Kris prefers wearing these trail shoes by Merrell.
- We’re certain you’ll be snapping tons of photos during your vacation to Barcelona. Rather than relying on your phone to capture the sights, upgrade to an actual camera for high quality photos. We travel with a Canon Rebel (which takes amazing photos) and a Canon PowerShot ELPH (which takes beautiful pictures and is a slim and lightweight budget camera).
- It’s easy to get turned around or lost in any new city! Be sure to have a good guidebook prior to arriving in Barcelona.
- Get (and stay) organized for your holiday to Barcelona by using our Travel Planning Printables. We also encourage you to read all our advice for Planning a Trip To Europe before you get started.
- Visiting Barcelona in the winter? We did, and loved it! Read our complete guide to Christmas in Barcelona and join in all the best festivities.
- Whether you travel with a backpack or a suitcase, you will also want a great day bag to organize and secure all of your daily travel items.
- Trip insurance may help with unexpected events (like lost luggage, canceled flights or getting sick). If you haven’t already obtained travel insurance for your trip, consider traveling protected with World Nomads.
We want to know: What is your favorite tapas bar in Barcelona? Is there anything you would add to our list of the best tapas in Barcelona? Give us your best tips and advice in the comments below!
Pin it! See all of our travel pins on our JetSetting Fools Pinterest Board.